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While cleaning out and arranging my collection of RPG stuff, I came across this old idea for Shadowrun. It dates from November 1989, thirteen years ago. It's not directly inspired by Star Trek's Borg, nor Doctor Who's Cybermen, but clearly ties in to the same concepts. It's easily adaptable to any setting with futuristic biotech. Enjoy.


Techgnosis is the belief that the melding of man and machine through cybertechnology is the ultimate step in evolution. Techgnostics believe that all men will one day be inextricably linked to machines through cybertechnology. Not merely the fashionable use of "cyberjunk" such as simsense units or headware for memory, but the re-structuring of all people after a certain age, with "superior" cybernetic replacements for "inferior" body parts. they predict that many people will be specially reconstructed for their jobs. For example, people who work in and under water will have their lungs replaced with cybernetic lungs/gills, whereas those who work in outer space might have their need for lungs totally eliminated through cybertechnology. Techgnostics also promote the development of AI (artificial intelligence), and speak of a future race of cyborgs possessing AI as our servants and companions.

As magic is incompatible with cybertechnology, techgnostics view magic with suspicion at best. Many hold that the re-emergence of magic is a downswing of evolution, a natural impediment that must be removed so that man can fulfill his destiny. Not surprisingly, many techgnostics are members of the Humanis Policlub. [In the Shadowrun game, that's an organization devoted to supporting "pure" humanity, which persecutes metahumans.] Many Burned-Out Mage types have adhered to techgnosis, but while they too have learned to dislike magic use, they remain perversely attached to enchanted items and magical creatures, and thus are never Humais Policlub members.